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Monday, 14 October 2013


It looks like they were designed to use the Thumb for pressing the shutter, and the Index finger to use the front dial.
Otherwise, it looks like it was designed by an industrial designer who has NEVER used the front dial of a camera.

> World's First Full-Frame Mirrorless?

This (admittedly quite bulky) full-frame mirrorless camera has been on the market for about a year already... ;-)

world's first? somebody forgot to check what LEICA has been doing for years.

regardless, this should be a strong competitor at a much lower price.
it doesn't look very nice in photographs, kind of a mish mash of styles, it will be interesting to see it in real life - and test it!

I'll wait to see what lenses are available for it. I doubt any of Sony's existing full-frame lenses will fit without an adapter because of the new body is more shallow (no mirror) and the APS-C lenses have too small an image circle.

Dear Shadzee,

OK, I give up. How do you even GET your thumb onto the shutter button if you're holding the camera normally???

pax / Ctein

Leica's been making full-frame mirrorless cameras since 2009. Even if you include live-view into the set of requirements, Leica's M240 was there first.

First autofocus full-frame mirrorless? First affordable full-frame mirrorless?

The Leica M9 should be counted as the first full-frame mirrorless camera.

Wasn't the Leica M9 the first full frame mirrorless? If not, then the current M 240 is full frame, mirrorless, has an option EVF, and live view. Rangefinder apparatus notwithstanding.

Perhaps you mean the first "sub $2000" full frame mirrorless with sub $1000 lenses. (at least I hope so)

Yet another consumption frenzy commences.

If nothing else the introduction of this camera should accelerate the demise of that bulky electro-mechanical anachronism: the DSLR.


Hoped that would cheer you up.

Was thinking about this on the cycle home from work, and wondered if some people might change their minds about the camera selections in their replies to the Friday post "Hypothetical Question: What Would You Do?"

There are also rumours of a Fuji X-E2 announcement coming this week.

Good times for photographers. Even if you can't afford any of the new "must haves", last year's models are really good too. (Thinks D600 shutter issues.) Well, mostly...

Wouldn't the Leica M be a full-frame mirrorless?

Interesting similarity in the angular design between the new Olympus and these new Sony cameras (if real.) Maybe just a coincidence.

Surely the pictured camera is only the work of a Photoshop artist based on the RX1. At least I hope so. It looks tacky and plain ugly.
One day a new Maitani will come and create a small, not-so-expensive, beautiful and practical full-frame DSLR with a proper optical viewfinder. Until then my interest for full frame digital cameras will hibernate.

Oh, man, I have to switch to Sony......

Echoing ShadZee, what were they thinking with that grip and shutter release? If the designers actually use cameras their fingers must be hinged differently than mine.

By contrast I own the much-maligned Sony A3000 and it has the about the best grip design and release position of any camera I have ever used. They seem to have lost something here.

It certainly looks like an interesting beast. I have the RX1 and love it. However, I'll probably wait to see how the lens choices develop over the next year or two.

Don't rangefinders have mirrors in them? Sorry, couldn't resist.

Looks good so far. These might make great light, high-res hiking cameras (not for wildlife perhaps, but people and landscapes). I'm still getting my EM1 for now, but I'm very happy to see full frame at a more reasonable price.

I find it looks like a franken-camera: Nex 7 + OMD

What's the use of the triangular object on the top other than to give the illusion of a pentaprism? I think something like the Panasonic DMC-L1 would be a superior design.

But those are minor concerns. Its good that the holy grail of full-frame is now just a regular cup of joe.

One aspect of the photo that makes me think the picture isn't real is the lens identifies as Carl Zeiss. I believe they switched a few months back to only using the branding Zeiss.


If there is some sort of provision for a cable release and tethered operation, I might not be getting that D800 after all.

I'd rather have a flipable LCD that worked for vertical waist level use than the *FSLR humpback *(Faux Single Lens Reflex)

Those FSLR humpbacks remind me of these

The RX1/RX1r are full frame mirrorless cameras that precede these, albeit without interchangeable lenses.

I crave a mirrorless so I can sometimes leave my DSLR and heavy prime lenses at home. I'm waiting for a certain set of attributes. I'll be looking closely to see if this new Sony meets my needs (in order of importance):

large sensor (to allow very shallow DOF)
small, light body (otherwise I'm sticking with what I've got)
excellent EVF
spot metering
a good, fast wide prime lens and a good, fast tele/portrait (or I can dream of an f/2.8 zoom)

So far it's clear that the A7s meet criterion number one...

Surely some of the previous Sony "reflex" type cameras had electronic viewfinders and no mirror? Or where those only half-frame?

This all may be pointless. If the U.S. goes into default, nobody is going to be buying anything.

Something about the ergonomics just does not look right to me. I would love to see how it handles when it comes out.

No one considers the RX1 full-frame mirrorless?

This is an interesting product.

I bought the previous NEX products because they gave new life to my manual focus Nikon and Olympus lenses except that the effective focal length became 1.5 times greater.

I am now used to using an EVF and focus peaking.

The new sensors on the A7 and A7r compensate for a short lens to sensor plane distance and if that works properly, lenses like the 12mm Heliar should work well.

It would be really nice to use these full-frame lenses again with their original angle of view and Sony's pricing provides a better value proposition than the Nikon D610 and D800 products.

I'm not sure which Sony I would purchase. Unless you are making huge images 24mp provides more than enough detail.

I'm quite happy using manual focus lenses with my Nex-7. If the new Nex plays ball with M mount lenses I'm sold. Sony lenses still don't look exciting.

I always suspected Full-Framers were EVIL....

C'Mon Fuji let's hear it for the X-Pro FF show'em whatcha got!

I agree with Mike on definitions here. The conventional definition of 'the mirrorless camera' is whatever describes the Panasonic G1 which was first-of-breed. dpreview describes it as "the first truly digital interchangeable lens camera". Since that time various short-cut names have been used including mirrorless, but they are just terms to describe whatever was new about the G1. In essence, a camera (not a camcorder) with no eye-point optics, and interchangeable lenses.

As yet, no-one has released a full-frame product in this category. Mike's right!

I have nothing mirrorless yet. Still shopping. As a user, do you have any lens recommendations for this bad boy? Just askin'

Rangefinders employ a couple of semi-transparent mirrors, as well as a third mirror or prism. They are definitely not mirrorless.

These cameras look like high school science projects.

sweet! finally something that will allow me to fully enjoy all my favorite lenses. i wish it was prettier, but at least it's reasonably small and if the layout and ergonomics are in the same vein as the rx1 (as it appears) i'm sure handling will be fine by me.

Maybe the first Mirroless FF DSLR? :)

The Sony RX1 was perhaps the first 'looker' in the digital camera realm- one gorgeous hunka lens with a cute little body to support it. I'm sure these A7's are capable performers, but why, why, why the Lego look?

I don't get why you would make this camera. To me the best thing about the mirrorless cameras is the small lenses. But if you make the lenses full frame, then they are big again.

Anyway, I'll let you all get back to your terminological quibbling. Which is really what the Internet is for, apparently.

Let's back up a bit. I thought the whole point of mirrorless and micro 4/3 was to cut back on the size and weight. I was willing to give up the bright full frame viewfinder, but why would I now want to carry the big lenses?

Mike -- your depression may be linked to your passion for photography; that is, your sensitivity to light may leave you susceptible to seasonal affect disorder. Just a thought. The days are growing short and nights long.

...no one expects the spanish inquisition..!

If this is in the Rx1/r vein, it won't be sub $2000- or even close!

Can't stand EVF cameras - even though my Rx-1 has a fine attachment EVF. I've finally figured out that what bugs me is taking off my glasses(I'm shortsighted) to look through the EVF breaks my 'seeing' of the image - and I can't use EVF at all wearing contact lenses. Whereas using an OVF - even if external and not precisely framed - does not.

Hence, I might swap my -1 for a -1r. But it looks like I'll be stuck with a 35 mm lens.

Mike, if you think the OMD-EM1 is ugly, I think this one is ugly to the cube power.

Nice body, but bulky lenses. Look at that 35mm 2.8. With that size you would at least expect an 1.8 aperture. The clever thing about leaving the mirror out is that you can also make compact lenses which leads to a compact system.

Mirrorless is also not a lucky definition. Especially not in the long run.
We do not call our cars steamless either.

Quite likely the ugliest camera I've seen since... the Sony A380, actually.

"World's first interchangeable lens, autofocus mirrorless stills camera"

Oh Mike how can you forget Contax?
The interchangeable lens Contax G2 and G3 didn't use mirrors, not even in the autofocus rangefinding mechanism.

"World's first interchangeable lens, through the lens autofocusing mirrorless stills camera"

BTW Could someone explain why the system of autofocusing used in the Contax G2 and a zillion 35mm point and shoot isn't used in any digital camera ? Nice long base rangefinder, super simple mechanical design, really fast, and with modern computing power you'd get a depth map for free.

I can't blame the interwebs for being all over these toys.

But I saw the specs - no IBIS and I don't recall there being any GPS either. So, how much is the A99 going to drop when this comes out?

Tongue in cheek:

Wasn't the Contax G:
1) An interchangeable lens stills camera?
2) A mirrorless camera?
3) An autofocus camera?

So my best guess is that the new Sony's are:
World's first interchangeable lens, autofocus mirrorless stills digital camera.

Can I use my Zeiss 50 f2.0 ZM on these things?

Finally! Goodbye Canon. You served me good, ONCE, with the 5D, then you betrayed me and focused on video cameras instead. Good luck with that. I'm going with the innovator! Three strikes in a row from SONY. Firt the RX100, then the RX1 and now THIS! Life is good!

Instead of terms like full frame and mirrorless, we should just adopt Starbucks-style nomenclature:

1" sensor: Short
Micro Four Thirds: Tall
APS-C: Grande
APS-C with mirror: Grande Prismatico
35mm: Venti
35mm with mirror: Venti Prismatico
Medium Format: Trenta

and so on...

Reading the comments I want to make you a suggestion: call Leica "mirrorless", so you will make a pat on the shoulder and reassure all that Leica owners that they are, indeed, not left out of the modern times. It seems they need to be reassured quite a bit...

Rangefinder cameras use a mirror!
Actually the rangfinder system requires a mirror to function.
Leica also plays in their own territory due to the pricing. It has no real competitor in that segment.
The Sony A7/r is building on the RX1 concept and has an attractive pricing from start - great!

"World's first interchangeable lens, autofocus mirrorless stills camera."

Aren't you forgetting the Contax G series?

I predicted this was going to be the future world of photography when I first used an interchangeable lens M4/3rd's camera, mirrorless digital viewfinders will exist in all formats, as soon as they can increase the quality level of viewing (and I read that a French company already had 5mp viewfinders they were experimenting with, so it's just down the road).

I get that sports people might want something faster, but the easy and quick to set face recognition, ability to pick any focus point on the screen, and small primes that can be built without the need for retro-focus designs, are only a few of the advantages of the mirrorless design that appeal to photographers dealing with general subjects.

90% of all people photography I do for money, is one person in an environment, and the most important thing is that I get that person sharp; easy face recognition settings are a boon to me; my old Nikon stuff would barely focus on faces and hunt back and forth because the out-lying sensor was not the best, only the center was, a drag when shooting vertical portraits...

Keep it coming...

"World's first interchangeable lens, autofocus mirrorless stills camera."

You missed "digital." I think the Contax G cameras meet all of your other classifications.

You know, just to be even more picky.

I presume that the IQ will be excellent, but not quite up to the level of the RX-1. If these cameras are weather-sealed, I will be interested. The problem that I foresee is the dearth of compact FF lenses. Standard size FF lenses will be disproportionately large for the body. This might make for cumbersome handling. It would be great if Sony/Zeiss puts some effort into designing high quality pancake lenses that would comprise a very compact, lightweight kit.

For those really pumped about these cameras Sony will be live-streaming their official announcement via YouTube tonight at 1am Central Standard Time.

Be there or be square.

What about first FF allviews (any lens live view solely) camera? 'Solely' takes care of the M9, 'live view' (either lcd or ev or most emphatically both) takes care of the Contax G, 'any lens' allows for AF lenses specially made for the mount but also with peaking allows for literally any manual focus lens with adapters - especially small in size RF lenses either LTM or LM (significant for many users though Mike normally seems to pass over this).

Has a 35mm focal length Sonnar ever been produced before? Perhaps many have been Sonnar types, but so branded? Interesting.

This all may be pointless. If the U.S. goes into default, nobody is going to be buying anything.

There's always the rest of the world!

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